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The Washington Independent
The Washington Independent

The Pros and Cons of Selling Products Overseas

The Pros and Cons of Selling Products Overseas

Most people assume that taking your business international is a good thing. After all, you want to grow the business and if you can move into markets across the world, surely that's a positive? In a lot of cases, it is, but selling products overseas isn't necessarily the right move for every business.

Elisa Mueller
Last updated: Nov 12, 2021 | Nov 09, 2021

Table of Contents

Most people assume that taking your business international is a good thing. After all, you want to grow the business and if you can move into markets across the world, surely that's a positive? In a lot of cases, it is, but selling products overseas isn't necessarily the right move for every business.

Although you can increase your revenue and build a global brand, there are also potential downsides like issues with logistics, time zones, and currency fluctuations. It's important that you consider all of the pros and cons before you make any big decisions. So, is it a good idea to sell products internationally?


Increased Revenue

One of the biggest pros to taking your business international is that you could be looking at a huge increase in revenue. There are a lot of untapped markets all around the world and if you can tap into them, there's no knowing how much money your business could earn. Breaking into the markets initially can be tough, but once you get your foot in the door, your business will scale rapidly.

Building Your Brand

Another great pro to selling products internationally is that you get the chance to build your brand. As you start to produce more and more, your company becomes well-known in new areas of the world. If you can establish yourself as a reputable company in markets all over the world, consumers will likely buy from you in their home countries too.

Sidestepping The Competition

If you're in a crowded marketplace, it might be tough to stand out. However, if you take your business international, you can sidestep the competition. When you enter new markets, there are often fewer competitors which gives you more of an opportunity to get your foot in the door and establish yourself.


Logistics Difficulties

When you sell products internationally, you might encounter problems with logistics. Shipping your products across the globe is a little more complicated. However, if you get a full truck load shipping quote to get an idea of how much it will cost, you can crunch the numbers and make sure that you are able to handle the additional costs. With proper planning, you shouldn't have a problem with shipping, but it's an additional challenge that you need to be prepared for.

Navigating Time Zones and Language Barriers

If you sell products internationally, it's important that you think about the language barrier and time zones. When you're shipping products overseas, there's a lot of paperwork involved, and if your logistics partners don't speak English as well as you do or can't understand your copywriting for invoices, etc., there could be problems. Organizing things is also much harder when you're working on different schedules due to timezones.

Currency Fluctuations

If you're making a lot of sales overseas, you'll need to think about exchange rates. If you're earning money in different currencies and the exchange rate shifts, your profitability will change dramatically and that could affect your business's cash flow. So, it's crucial that you stay abreast of your finances and you always keep a good cash buffer.

Before you make any big plans for overseas expansion, make sure you weigh up the pros and cons.

Elisa Mueller | Elisa Mueller was born in Kansas City, Missouri, to a mother who taught reading and a father who taught film. As a result, she spent an excessive amount of her childhood reading books and watching movies. She went to the University of Kansas for college, where she earned bachelor's degrees in English and journalism. She moved to New York City and worked for Entertainment Weekly magazine for ten years, visiting film sets all over the world.


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